I am an interviewing for a UX Manager position. I will be the first UX professional to join this company. The company has neglected UCD and is now looking for someone to spearhead UX methodologies and integrate it into their development process.

I am having an interview with the CTO tomorrow and apparatently he's big on agile. I have only experienced working in an agile once and it wasn't fun.
Management wasn't too happy with the developers as they rushed everything and did not give me a seat at the table.

Are there any tips and advice on what questions he may throw at me? I will be working with him and his team a lot, so my potential future boss wants me to meet him as a second opinion.

Thanks in advance

  • 1
    This is an interesting question, but it's off topic for the site because the answers will be primarily opinion-based. Only the interviewer knows what he will ask, anything else is speculation. – dennislees Mar 6 '18 at 4:39

I have only experienced working in an agile once and it wasn't fun.

In user research we call this a small sample size.

...[they] did not give me a seat at the table.

And no one ever will. You gotta earn that.

The problem is that people who can write code are far more essential to a software project than people who can't write code. It's not enough to just be the token UX guy evangelist here to save the day with post-it notes and empathy maps. Developers make software, UXers just try to influence how they do it. Until our work fits into and helps their work, it's just more friction.

Are there any tips and advice on what questions he may throw at me?

He may ask you about your experience with Agile, and based on what you've mentioned I would not recommend being honest because it sounds like you still have some scorn for Agile.

You might instead try applying user research techniques and interviewing him instead. Try to understand his needs and motivations. Figure out how to make what you do help the coders do what they do, because ultimately software design is about slingin' code.

In other words, get the notion that they've "neglected UCD" out of your head, and instead pretend it's an opportunity to learn something new and grow professionally.


Obviously, you don't want to just BS your way through (or maybe you do, but I can't advise you on how to do that). If the guy is actually a big proponent of agile, you can probably go a long way just sharing your experience honestly. But, two things that might help is having basic agile (and Scrum if that's important) knowledge.

www.agilemanifesto.org contains the 4 principles that drive agile and also has 12 more concrete principles (first link on the page). Having at least read that is really helpful.

If they're practicing scrum, take a look through the Scrum Guide. In regards to how a UX specialist fits, you may find this segment about the cross-functional self-organizing team interesting:

Scrum Teams are self-organizing and cross-functional. Self-organizing teams choose how best to accomplish their work, rather than being directed by others outside the team. Cross-functional teams have all competencies needed to accomplish the work without depending on others not part of the team.

You only have a day, so I wouldn't try to sound like an expert. A bit of the basics will show you've done your homework at least.

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